Andes Dems court local voters
By Joe Moskowitz
Democrats do get elected to public office in Delaware County but it can be an uphill battle because there are about 13,000 registered Republicans and only about 8,000 registered Democrats.
But the Andes Democratic Committee sees “second homers” as a key to changing the political landscape
They have begun an effort to try and recruit downstate Democrats to vote upstate. Andes Democratic Chairman Fred Cubero says the numbers are there. He says that more than 70 percent of the property owners in the Town of Andes are “second homers.” And, if local Democratic leaders can get just some of them to register to vote up here, rather than down there, it could change the political picture dramatically. Cubero point out that many races in Delaware County are decided by 10 votes or fewer.
Little downstate impact
The Long Island voter registration is an almost even split, Westchester County favors Democrats. But the big prize, New York City, is overwhelmingly Democratic by a six to one margin. Cubero argues that Democrats are wasting their votes downstate when their votes could have a huge impact upstate.
That argument has been made before and runs into the same objections, mainly losing rent stabilization, which could cost them thousands of dollars a year, and being called for jury duty in two jurisdictions. But Saturday at Andes Community Day, Democrats were handing out fliers addressing those issues. A person can’t vote in two places, but if a couple decides to have one person register downstate and the other register here, they can keep their lower rent, or if they own their home, STAR tax deduction, and one of them can vote here. Jury service in one jurisdiction is accepted as a claim to be excused from service in another jurisdiction.
Cubero says the downstate voter drive is beginning to gain momentum. He says if second homeowners vote here, not only would it give local Democrats more clout, it would also indicate a greater population, and he says it will give part-time residents a stronger voice in an area they may decide to live in full time when they retire.
If the idea catches on, Cubero will try to convince the county Democratic Committee to try it elsewhere. Middletown and Roxbury also have very large percentage of property owners who list their primary residences as being elsewhere.
This is the Democrats’ plan for the future, but right now, Marty Donnelly is running for re-election as Andes Town Supervisor. He is a Republican and he is unopposed.